Home Entertainment Puddles Pity Party is just a clown with a dream

Puddles Pity Party is just a clown with a dream

Puddles Pity Party has been around on the internet for a very long time. His own YouTube channel and collaborations with the Postmodern Jukebox showed that he’s not merely an eccentric presence, but a unique and powerful performer, as well.

Coming in just under seven-foot tall, Puddles the sad clown is entirely mute until he delivers some of your favourite songs with a voice that is, quite frankly, unlike any others; like a macabre Sinatra or grim Alfie Boe, it takes a lot for his striking look to be overpowered – but he does it with ease.

And, much to my pleasure, this harlequin stays within his shtick no matter what. Just before Puddles’ week-long tenure at London’s Soho Theatre, his management offered me interview time – but with a catch. We could either do a Zoom call where he would… mime his answers out to me. Or he could email me his thoughts. As someone who’s, um, not the biggest fan of clowns, I opted for the latter.

Still, Puddles was keen to exclusively tell Express.co.uk that clowns perhaps aren’t as sinister as one might expect. “There are way more friendly clowns than scary clowns,” he wrote. “And I think most people can differentiate without panning all clowns as bad. If I run into someone who is nervous around me, I give them their space, but let them know I’m here for a hug if they want it. They eventually come around.”

It’s this kind of honest and open optimism that has beckoned Puddles back to the UK multiple times over recent years.

“This will be my third time performing in London,” Puddles penned. “And I’m so chuffed to be back. I’ve missed my UK audiences (and I’ve missed all the fancy tea cakes!).” 

With the pandemic “somewhat under control”, Puddles added, he wants to delve further afield from his American home, mentioning Japan, New Zealand, Iceland and Brazil. “I’m saving up my Delta CryMiles,” he went on. “So I can bring the Pity Party to all the peoples on the planet.”

For now, though, he’s travelling the UK, hitting Liverpool, Wales, and more on his journey on this side of the pond. And, even if you’ve seen Puddles Pity Party before, the Pagliacci lookalike promises surprises along the way. “I try to change things up a bit now and then for the regulars,” he said. “I haven’t performed in the UK since 2018. I keep a few popular favourites in the set, but it’s 90 percent new material since my last time through.

“This show touches on the current loneliness epidemic that affects so many in our society. Oh, and I invited Kevin Costner to join me. He hasn’t gotten back to me yet. But I’m sure he’s just busy packing his bags and trying to find a horse sitter.”

With loneliness as an emerging theme for the show, and Puddles inherently being painted as a sad clown, is his sadness now a part of him?

“There is a lot to be sad about in this world,” Puddles explained. “But, thankfully, life still provides, some opportunities for pleasure (like coffee and pie and the company of our four-legged friends!).”

“It’s important to acknowledge our sadness and grief and not let it fester,” Puddles waxed. Everyone has their own process, so I wouldn’t want to suggest that I know best. But I’m all about crying it out and talking to someone when my sadness feels too much. They might not be able to fix my problem or eradicate the pain, but just getting it off my chest and knowing that someone is in my corner can be very comforting. I also find solace in knowing that every day brings change. If today is a bad day, just hang on and before you know it, you’ll come across something that makes you smile or fills you with love and wonder.

He surely has a lot to be happy about, though. With growing tours, bigger shows, a Las Vegas residency, and after playing to millions of people on America’s Got Talent in 2017, Puddles is certainly building a nuanced legacy.

“Legacy?” Puddles balked. “Gosh, that sounds important. Performing on AGT [America’s Got Talent] was an overwhelming experience and it introduced me to many new fans.”

Puddles concluded: “If anything, I hope my music brings fans happiness and a respite from these troubled times. And when they come to a show, I hope the Pity Party inspires them to be kinder to themselves and to others. A clown can dream.

Puddles Pity Party is playing Soho Theatre from Monday, March 11 to Monday, March 18. Buy tickets here.


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